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He's Not Him

I stared at myself in the mirror and thought about how foreign I looked. My face was all wrong. This mask starting back at me looked nothing like the girl I knew. I hadn’t put on anymore makeup than I wore on an ordinary day. But, for some reason, I looked like a different person. I couldn’t face myself to walk back out of that door to him lying there in bed.

While I splashed the water over my face I couldn’t help but think about what I was doing. This wasn’t me. He wasn’t the guy I wanted. The water hadn’t done much but make my mascara run and the pimple on my right cheek look redder. My hair hung in a weird way, not completely straight but not wavy either. My face, my body didn’t look right tonight. It was like a cruel joke God was playing on me. This is what happens to you when you fornicate! When I blinked, I almost thought I saw the word ‘fornicator’ spelled out across my head. My eyes popped open and I realized I was just imagining it.

Thinking, I wasn’t sure how other people came about it. How did they have their first time? It couldn’t be this odd for everyone. There was no doubt I loved him, but I knew he wasn’t the one. Whatever feeling it was, I knew he wasn’t the guy I was going to marry. I don’t know what made me feel this way or if he felt it, too. Sure, I loved being with him. I enjoyed all of our time, but he wasn’t him.

So why was I doing this? On another night I might’ve been able to slip out of the window but as I stood naked in the bathroom, there was no chance. It would wind up embarrassing and awkward when a neighbor or friend of his caught me. It wasn’t him. We had known each other for three years, more than friends but not together for over two and half of them. I’d moved down for college a month ago and I was so excited for us to finally be together. I thought maybe being with him would make me feel those feelings telling me he was the one. It hadn’t. The only thing I felt was like I was lying to him. Maybe I was. Maybe every time I said I love you it had just been deceit. But in my heart I truly meant those words.

When we first met, he was five years older than me and very experienced. I wasn’t. Sure I’d dated some guys and considered this with them, but it never went that far. I figured it was something stupid and a high school relationship that wouldn’t last—and I was right. None of those boyfriends from high school were anywhere around. By the time I moved up here, the number of girls he’d slept with was in the 30’s. He had never hidden it that he’d love to sleep with me. It was well-known. I’d never hidden that I wasn’t so sure—I made that a fact. It was never real to me. I always thought we’d have something but it would never have the chance to go on and really become something. I’d find a guy who I thought was right or we’d just lose touch.

For years he kept pulling me out and in. It was hard to endure the first few times, but then I learned how to always keep him at arm’s length concerning my affections. But I had done it all and moved up here. We were together and it was so much fun. I loved having a boyfriend with a legitimate job that paid good money. He bought me such nice things and we went places. I spent some nights at his house and I’d watch as he made us supper. I never was much for cooking, but he was helping me learn. Things were pretty great.

Then there was his persistence. I had been taught as a kid that a real man who really loves you won’t pressure you to do anything you don’t want to do. A real man won’t pressure you for sex. I’m not saying I doubted his feelings for me, but I was pressured. I’d only been up here and month and I was about to give it up. I had spent a few nights with him, but each time I’d managed to avoid it. I wasn’t very experienced when I moved up here, but he didn’t care. For a while I felt confident in what I did and how I acted toward him. Then I began to worry that I wasn’t good enough or that I didn’t know what I was doing. I could usually shrug off the negative words in my mind and give him another kiss, not a second thought about it. But not tonight.

The way my face was shaped looked bad. My eyes weren’t pretty tonight and my bottom lip looked funny on the right side. I was only doing this tonight because he wanted it. Of course I wanted to as well, but in a different way. It was the natural human way to want something like this; to know what all the talk was about. But when it came to me actually doing it, I’d said I would be right back. So here I was. I didn’t know how to tell him I didn’t want to. He had been pressuring me for weeks and I knew with almost certainty that if I didn’t finally give in, he’d leave me. Actually, I didn’t know that. He hadn’t said or done anything to make me think that, I guess it was just in my head. But he was getting a little impatient with me.

He called my name and I knew I’d have to go back out there. I wouldn’t be able to go through with it. I knew he wasn’t the one for me. I don’t know why it crossed my mind that sex would be a good idea. That was supposed to be for somebody you loved—someone that you were married to. I never slept with anyone before because I knew they weren’t the one I’d marry. They were just those stupid high school boyfriends. Deep down, I knew for sure that I wasn’t going to marry him either. I’d always thought of it like, if this is really the guy I’m going to marry, then what’s it matter to wait a while longer?

If I was already so certain this wasn’t the guy I would marry, then why was I about to walk out there and give it all away, just because I knew it’s what he wanted? Why did I feel so fake? I didn’t like the way my hair hung or the way the makeup settled on my face. I didn’t like the look in my eyes—one of fear and desperation. I was just too weak to do anything different or even change. My life was being controlled, and I didn’t even know who was in charge. I opened the door and flipped off the lights. The look in my eyes was replaced by nervousness. At least that seemed normal. And maybe I could hope for this to be normal.



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Mrs.NiallHoran said...
May 20, 2012 at 3:34 pm:
Amazing. Your wording is perfect and your character's state of mind is clear as could be. Great, great job! Please read my work and tell me what you think! And if you could read a writer called 'Fakesmile' too that would be great. :)
 
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